Indoor Gardening

Fourth Week

GREENHOUSE AND CONSERVATORY. As the great proportion of greenhouse plants are now commencing, or are in active growth, constant attention will be required for the judicious regulation of temperature, and for the admission of fresh air during fickle and ungenial weather, and in the

supply of water to the roots, and atmospheric moisture. When settled fine spring weather has arrived, every plant which inhabits a pot should be brought at once under review, and put in proper condition for the growing season. No fear need then be apprehended from potting. Keep up a moist atmosphere by sprinkling, &c., and admit plenty of air, bearing in mind former directions as to draughts, &c. If the plants in the borders, or any of the climbers, are dry, give them a good soaking of weak, tepid manure water. Trellis climbers to be frequently attended to--stopping, training, and arranging their shoots. Balsams.--Encourage the growth of them and other such tender annuals by potting them when the roots begin to cluster round the side of the pot. Calceolarias (Herbaceous).--Shift on the young stock, keeping the plants well down in the pots, so as to bring the earth in the pots up to the lowermost leaves, to induce the plants to throw out fresh rootlets from the stem. Keep a sharp look out for green fly. Climbers.--Prune off superfluous shoots; stop or pinch out the tops of gross leaders, and keep them neatly tied and trained. Cockscombs.--To remain in small pots until they begin to show flower. Dahlias.--Pot off cuttings as soon as struck. Fuchsias.--Continue to shift young plants into larger-sized pots, according to their height and strength; to be kept growing by placing them in a brisk, moist heat. Cuttings to be potted off as soon as they are sufficiently rooted; to be placed in a temperature similar to that in which they were struck. Sow in heat seeds of stove and greenhouse plants. STOVE AND ORCHID-HOUSE. Attend to regular shifting, watering, and a free and healthy circulation of air, without draught, early in the morning to stove plants. Continue to cut down, disroot, and repot, as advised last week, those which have been flowering through the winter. To be then favoured with a bottom heat of from 75 deg. to 80 deg., and slightly shaded during bright sunshine. Some of the young plants in the stove which are growing on for specimens will probably require a second shift, see to them in time; and if they are in good health treat them liberally by giving a large shift, especially to plants of free growth. Give plenty of air at all favourable opportunities, and saturate the atmosphere with moisture. The surface of the tan to be stirred once or twice a-week, and sprinkle it occasionally with manure water, to produce a moist, congenial atmosphere about the plants. Shut up with plenty of sun heat. Look sharply after mealy-bug and thrips. Achimenes.--The plants established in small pots may be removed into the flowering-pans, putting six plants into a pan. Orchids.--Increase the temperature, and ply the syringe among them, as they will now grow rapidly. Be careful not to throw too much water over those sending out succulent flower-stalks, for they may damp off. Ferret out and destroy cockroaches, woodlice, and snails. Calantha veratifolia, Neottia picta, N. elata, Phaius of sorts, some varieties of Stanhopea, Zygopetaltum Mackayii, and other such Orchids that are now making their growth, would be benefited by an application of clear, diluted manure water occasionally; a kindly humidity to be kept up, and the shading to be in readiness for use during bright mid-day sun. PITS AND FRAMES. Sow tender and half-hardy annuals; pot off those already up; give air daily, and never allow the plants to flag for want of water. Pot off cuttings of Dahlias, and continue the propagation of Fuchsias, Heliotropes, Petunias, Verbenas, and bedding-plants generally. FORCING-HOUSES. Beans (French).--Give them, when in a bearing state, a liberal supply of manure water, and see to keeping up a succession of them. Cherries.--When you are sure that the fruit is finally stoned, the temperature may be raised a few degrees; air and water overhead to be liberally supplied. Cucumbers.--As soon as the frames are uncovered in the morning give a little air for an hour, to let the stagnant and foul air pass off, when they may be closed again till the day is further advanced. As soon as the principal shoots have reached the side of the frame, never allow any of the laterals to grow more than two joints before being stopped. Stop frequently, and thin liberally; where two fruit show at a joint pinch one away. Figs.--If red spider should be observed, wash the flues or the walls exposed to the sun with lime and sulphur. Melons.--Those lately planted out to be encouraged with a close, moist heat, to get them into free growth as quickly as possible. The plants that are fairly established to be kept cooler, admitting air at every favourable opportunity, to produce short-jointed fruitful wood. The shoots to be kept thin and regular, pinching out any that are not wanted. The night temperature not to exceed 65 deg., and air to be admitted as soon as the thermometer rises to 75 deg.; but to be given very cautiously during cold winds. Prepare for raising plenty of young plants for succession crops, and endeavour to have them strong and vigorous by keeping them near the glass; to be provided, when they require it, with plenty of pot-room. Keep up the heat in the beds by renewing the linings; the coverings at night to be regulated in accordance with the heat of the beds, taking care that the mats do not hang over either the front or back of the frames. Mushrooms.--Collect materials for fresh beds, and give those that have been some time in bearing good soakings of manure water; sprinkle the floor and heating apparatus occasionally. The conditions of success are to have the materials for making the beds well prepared and sweet--that is, free from rank steam, and the spawn to be put in whilst the heat keeps regular and moderate, and the beds are coated over to keep it so until the spawn is well established. Peaches.--Remove all superfluous shoots, and tie in neatly those that are left; thin the fruit that is swelling off before stoning, leaving more than may be ultimately required, as, in stoning, it is liable to drop off. Syringe the trees daily in fine weather. Where it is intended to force Peaches, Cherries, &c., in pots next season, and some suitable trees have to be provided, it should be no longer postponed. It is a good plan to pot some maiden plants every year, to succeed any that may become useless. Pines.--Give plants swelling their fruit plenty of manure water, and a humid atmosphere. The fruiting-house may range from 80 deg. to 85 deg. during the day, and as near 70 deg. as possible at night; the succession-pits from 75 deg. to 80 deg. during day, and 60 deg. to 65 deg. at night. These particulars to be modified by the state of the weather, whether sunny or dull. Strawberries.--They require plenty of light and air to set their fruit, when they may be removed without fear of injury to a stove, or any other house or pit possessing a higher temperature. The plants swelling their fruit require a liberal supply of water, and a sprinkling overhead daily. When the fruit begins to change colour the sprinkling to be dispensed with, and the supply of water at the roots to be given sparingly. Vines.--If the Grapes are colouring, a free circulation of air, accompanied with a high temperature, will be advantageous. Attention to be given, where fermenting materials have been used for warming the borders, that the heat is not allowed to decline at present under the influence of the March winds. Attend to last week's advice as to tying, disbudding, &c., and proceed with the thinning the fruit in the succession-house as soon as the berries are fairly set. When thinning be as careful as possible of the bunches--neither pull them about with the hand, by which rust on the berries is frequently produced, nor with whatever the shoulders may be held up by at the time of thinning, as, by the twisting of the stalks, shanking is not unfrequently produced. Attention to be given in stopping all laterals, and breaking off all useless shoots for the more free admission of light, which is most beneficial in every stage of their growth. Look over houses where the fruit is swelling, and see if any of the bunches would be improved by tying up the shoulders. Any healthy Vines, but not of good kinds, should be inarched before the wood gets too old.

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